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Judge postpones Barnes death penalty decision
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Accused murderer Lanny Barnes will have to wait a month longer to find out if Judge Gene Benton will rule the death penalty is unconstitutional in Georgia.

After hearing all the current testimony on the motion Friday, Benton decided to postpone issuing a ruling so Newton County District Attorney Ken Wynne could have more time to examine evidence provided by the defense.

 Wynne received thousands of pages of documents this week regarding the testimony given by Dr. Wanda Foglia and Dr. William Bowers of the Capital Jury Project. The district attorney asked the judge for time to review the documents and determine if he wished any witnesses on the issue.

Aug. 21-24 has been set as the tentative time frame for the continuance of the motion hearing.

Foglia concluded her testimony Friday on problems within the jury system. She spent most of day under cross-examination from Wynne, who attempted to prove the questionnaire used in the CJP's study contained biased questions. The CJP study is based on interviews with former jurors in murder trails.

Barnes is accused of running over and killing 2-year-old Avery King with his car and severely injuring mother Anita King, aunt Stephanie Casola, 5-year old cousin Jacob Casola and 4-year-old cousin Isaac Casola.

At the end of the hearing, Barnes, who has been diagnosed with leukemia, was asked by the judge whether he was satisfied with the way his attorneys had handled his defense so far. An obviously weak Barnes chose to invoke his Fifth Amendment right.

Other motions were scheduled to be heard during the three day hearing, which began Wednesday, but lead defense attorney Chris Adams said he under estimated the time it would take for Bowers and Foglia to testify.